Heist-op-den-Berg is a Belgian municipality in the region of Flandern and also the location of the university of music, lyric and dance as well as fine and applied arts. Up to now the education took place within the old rooms, built in the 1970s, which have been renovated only once. That wasn’t fitting for the demands of a modern university. Calculations proved that an additional gross area of 2.200 m2 were needed. Therefore, it has been decided to renovate the existing buildings and to improve sanitation and fire protection. The architects of Cuypers & Q interprof. Architectenvennootschap won the architectural competition organized by the university.
The conceptual design showed a true art-campus. For the realization of the design, the building ensemble was complemented by an additional building. Several classrooms, studios and a full-featured auditorium are located within the object. Visitors notice the anthracite exposed concrete pallets of the facade first. The surface of the concrete pallets has been designed with NOEplast structural molds.
For the procedure the molds, made of polyurethan, are fixated within the formwork thus the concrete can be poured in. As soon as it is cured, the mold can be removed and the relief becomes visible. This design-technique works for cast-in-place concrete as well as for the production within a precast plant. However, it is important to ensure that the mold does not shift. For that matter, the processor has different options: The first option is to glue the mold onto the formwork. The second option is to glue the structural mold onto a support plate. The support plate will be screwed together with the formwork. The advantage of this is that the formwork and the support plate can be separated afterwards.
NOE is the only manufacturer who offers to provide the molds ready for use. For the façade relief the architects wanted to design a surface which has the surface texture of reed mats. First, they experimented with natural materials which failed, because parts of the reed kept getting stuck in the concrete. The alternative was the mold “Camargue” from NOE, which is a nature-identical imprint of the sweet grass. It is available in size 4,3 x 2,5 m (height and width) with a structure depth of 16 mm. The mold is provided with a fiber network on the back side, which prevents deformation and offers additional strength. Due to that NOEplast can be reused up to 100 times. This can reduce costs and protects the environment. For the new construction of the university 1.400 m2 façade panels with the structural molds “Camargue” were constructed.
NOE-Schaltechnik offers a variety of different relief-designs. Many of them have been constructed by moulding natural materials with the help of polyurethane. Additionally, there are structures which have been designed and constructed at the drawing board of the NOE-employees. All of them add up to approximately 100 completely different standard designs. Nevertheless, oftentimes architects are aiming for an individual design for their building and create their own relief. Pursuant to the wish, the employees will design an individual structural mold exclusively for the request of the architect. To achieve an ideal solution, the employees will decide on the most efficient method to construct the new mold. Therefore, NOE offers maximum design flexibility.
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